Marine Major Indicted on Financial Crimes

PHOENIX – A Marine Major turned himself in to federal authorities in Phoenix on Monday pursuant to an arrest warrant on charges he illegally deposited over $440,000 into U.S. bank accounts following a six-month deployment in Iraq in 2005 as a contracting officer. Charges facing the Marine Major, Mark Richard Fuller, 42, of Yuma, Ariz., are detailed in a 22-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Phoenix. They include Structuring Financial Transactions Through A Domestic Financial Institution, a violation of 31 U.S.C. § 5324(a)(3).

The indictment alleges that Fuller is a Marine Major who was deployed to Iraq from February 15, 2005 to September 27, 2005. Fuller served as a Project Purchasing Officer for the Commander’s Emergency Response Program (CERP), and he was assigned to the 5th Civil Affairs Group, Camp Fallujah, in Iraq. In this capacity Fuller identified and selected reconstruction projects, awarded reconstruction projects to Iraqi contractors, negotiated contract terms, and verified the completion of projects. CERP funds were distributed to the Iraqi contractors in the form of brand new $100 United States Currency notes.

According to the indictment, soon after returning from his deployment in Iraq, Fuller began making cash deposits with brand new $100 U.S. Currency notes. Between October of 2005 to April of 2006, Fuller made 91 cash deposits totaling over $440,000 into bank accounts with Bank of America, Chase Bank and the Navy Federal Credit Union. The indictment alleges that Fuller made multiple cash deposits under $10,000 into various bank accounts for the purpose of evading the reporting requirements under Federal Law.

A conviction for Structuring Financial Transactions carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both. In determining the actual sentence, a federal judge will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide the appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.

An indictment is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The joint investigation was conducted by the Internal Revenue Service -Criminal Investigations, Naval Criminal Investigative Service, Defense Criminal Investigative Service and the Special Inspector General for Iraqi Reconstruction. The prosecution is being handled by Raymond K. Woo, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix.

CASE NUMBER: CR-10-605-PHX-DGC

RELEASE NUMBER: 2010-105(Defendant’s last name)

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